And here's the first of the recipes from Mollie Katzen's The Vegetable Dishes I Can't Live Without. I've been craving brussels sprouts after having had an appetizer similar to this one recently. Here, Katzen combines the sprouts with shallots and hazelnuts. Katzen advises readers to blanch the hazelnuts by roasting them in a 250°F oven on a shallow tray, for 5 to 10 minutes. Let them cool and then rub off the skins with your fingers or a clean kitchen towel.
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil or unsalted butter
- 1 cup minced shallots (about 6 ounces)
- 4 cups (1 pound) Brussels sprouts, halved or quartered lengthwise (or left whole, if small)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- Roasted hazelnut oil (optional)
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup (or more) blanched hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
Put a large saucepan of water on to boil.
In the meantime, place a large, deep skillet over medium heat. After about a minute, add the olive oil or melt the butter and swirl to coat pan. Stir in the shallots, and cook, stirring frequently, for 3 to 5 minutes or until shallots turn deep golden color.
When the water boils, reduce heat to low and add the Brussels sprouts. Simmer 2 to 3 minutes or until sprouts turn green and shiny and are beginning to become tender.
Dump sprouts into a colander in the sink; refresh under cold running water. Drain well.
Add sprouts to the shallots, sprinkling with the salt. Stir until well combined, then spread the vegetables out to edges of the pan to make a shallow layer.
Raise heat for a few minutes, shaking pan a few times to redistribute the heat. This allows the juices to evaporate—and slightly scorches the vegetables—both of which serve to intensify the flavor.
Serve hot or warm, with a light drizzle of roasted hazelnut oil, if available, and with sprinklings of black pepper and chopped hazelnuts.